The Centre for Youth and Criminal Justice (CYCJ) have published a new report looking at the introduction of a new tool to measure the strengths, needs and adverse childhood experiences (ACEs) in young women described as ‘high risk’.
The report summarises findings from CYCJ’s work to carry out an examination of the Up-2-Us Strength and Resilience Monitoring (SRM) tool.
Up-2-Us, a third sector organisation that works in a flexible, holistic, person-centred way to support vulnerable young people and families across West Central Scotland, designed the monitoring tool for use with service users in one of their young women’s projects.
This tool was intended to help identify the unique needs of the young women they support, described as ‘high risk’ in regards to offending, substance use and harm to self; additionally having vulnerability in regards to their relationships with others, poor wellbeing, homelessness, experience of trauma, neglect and abuse and being care experienced.
In addition, the tool was intended to provide the means to discuss concerns identified on an ongoing basis and record changes over time. Crucially the tool was conceived and created using a strengths-based design aimed to promote the positive aspects of the young women’s lives.
The report found that although the numbers in the sample are too small to make generalised assertions about the usefulness of the tool, there was evidence to suggest it could be used consistently, with the scoring of responses to the tool between primary and secondary keyworkers similar enough to suggest there is an element of reliability.
What can be asserted broadly is that this type of tool may be useful in working with young women who have experienced adversity within their childhoods and find themselves struggling with high-risk and/or offending behaviour.